Deep-sea sponge grounds of the Flemish Cap, Flemish Pass and the Grand Banks of Newfoundland (Northwest Atlantic Ocean): Distribution and species composition
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AuthorsMurillo, F.J. (Francisco Javier); Durán-Muñoz, P. (Pablo); Cristobo, J. (Javier); Ríos, P. (Pilar); González-Iglesias, M.C. (María de la Concepción); Kenchington, E. (Ellen); Serrano, A. (Alberto)
Northwest Atlantic Ocean
Vulnerable Marine Ecosystems
Distribution and species composition of deep-sea sponge grounds of the Flemish Cap, Flemish Pass and the Grand Banks of Newfoundland are described based on Spanish/EU bottom trawl groundfish surveys between 40 and 1500 m depth. Four areas with large catches of sponges and at least 30 different species have been identified in the study area. Geodia barretti, Geodia macandrewii, Geodia phlegraei, Stryphnus ponderosus and Stelletta normani are the main structural sponges and constitute more than 94% of the total invertebrate biomass of these grounds. The temperature and salinity observed over these bottoms ranged between 3.38 and 3.84°C and between 34.85 and 34.90‰, respectively. The biomass of deep-water sponges per swept area was significantly higher on lightly or untrawled bottoms than in the grounds that are regularly fished. Data from trawl groundfish surveys cannot map the deep-sea sponge grounds to a precision less than the trawl distance of 1.5 nm. Nevertheless it has been used by ...
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